Big sales ahead for epic 'Grand Theft Auto' sequel

The game, which debuts Tuesday, is expected to bring in more than $1 billion in revenue. Not bad for a title that cost an estimated $270 million.

By Kim Peterson Sep 17, 2013 1:36PM
Screenshot from Grand Theft Auto 5 (© Rockstar Games)What is likely the most expensive video game in history debuts Tuesday.

The latest installment in the "Grand Theft Auto" series cost at least $270 million to build and market, according to news reports, but that's hardly a risk for developer Rockstar Games. In fact, "Grand Theft Auto V" could make all that money back in its first day of sales.

R.W. Baird analyst Colin Sebastian thinks the $60 game will bring in $1 billion at retail in its first month alone, according to GamesBeat.

The last version of the game, released in 2008, generated $310 million in sales in its first day. That game went on to sell more than 25 million copies.

Early preorders have indicated strong interest in "GTA V," and so there's little doubt the game will be a blockbuster. It's the kind of success that Hollywood can only dream about in most cases. "Iron Man 3" topped the $1 billion mark in less than a month, taking the No. 16 spot on the list of all-time highest-grossing films, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The game is notorious for its ultraviolent depiction of life on the streets as well as its misogynist themes, but that hasn't dampened its critical acclaim. IGN calls it a "bitingly relevant commentary on contemporary, post-economic crisis America." Game Informer says it's "filled with beautiful scenery, a wealth of activities and the promise of fortune."

The game comes just two months before the arrival of the Sony PlayStation 4 (SNE) and the Microsoft Xbox One (MSFT), USA Today notes. (Microsoft owns and publishes moneyNOW, an MSN Money site.)

In that sense, it is the swan song of the current generation of gaming platforms. "In many ways it's a game that is only possible to produce at the end of a console generation, as development has taken more than half a decade to complete," Geoff Keighley, host of GameTrailers TV, told the newspaper.

More on moneyNOW



12Comments
Sep 17, 2013 3:14PM
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Misogynist themes? My god, there are some professional victims out there that love to complain about how their feelings are hurt.

None of the GTA games are misogynist. Pretty much every character in the game is an enemy to hero. There is no more violence, and hate towards women in the games than towards anyone else. GTA kills everyone equally, hookers, cops, to random pedestrians.

Sep 17, 2013 3:21PM
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Here comes the scapegoating. It was books, then music, then movies, then TV and now video games.... How about you stop trying to pass the buck?
Sep 17, 2013 3:11PM
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inb4 Media attacks Rockstar for video game violence 
Sep 17, 2013 3:47PM
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According to this woman writing this article, Misondristic themes are much better. (hatred for men)  I'm sure she enjoys a good male bashing session with her girly friends.
Sep 17, 2013 3:45PM
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Of course a woman would write this column "Misogynistic" themes.  LOL  dumb woman
Sep 17, 2013 5:46PM
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GREAT MORE TAX PAYER MONEY SPENT BY OBAMA VOTERS SITTING AROUND PLAYING

VIDEO GAMES ON THE TAX PAYER DIME SO THEY WILL VOTE FOR MORE LEFT WING

PROGRESSIVE DEMONCRATS NEXT YEAR! JUST LIVE IT UP OBAMANITES IT'S ALL COMING

CRASHING DOWN VERY SOON AND YOU'LL BE OUT ON THE STREET AGAIN AND OBAMA

WILL BE OUT OF OFFICE AND YOU'LL HAVE TO GET A ****ING JOB BUT THERE WON'T BE

ANY CAUSE OBAMA AND DEMONCRATS DESTROY THE ECONOMY AND COUNTRY AND

BACK IN THEIR MILLION DOLLAR HOUSES SPENDING ALL THEIR MILLIONS!

Sep 17, 2013 3:28PM
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Anyone aware of any innovation in the game or is it just the same old CoD story?

Lack of innovation in GTA IV (the biggest achievement being that you could turn on the headlights in a car) is why I switched over to Saints Row. Same premise but SR embraced the outrageousness that so many gamers crave. and GTA shunned.

Sep 17, 2013 3:23PM
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